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International Automotive Technicians Network
Insight into usage of scan devices and information systems
Posted to Tool & Equipment Forum on 8/14/2023 21 Replies

Hello all, our organization is trying to understand the most common practices and tools used by techs in diagnosis and repair. We know that there are multiple scan devices out there (Snap-on tools, Autel, Launch, xTool etc.) that are used by techs to read & clear DTCs, reset procedures, and perform common tests. Some devices also allow access into repair info via intelligent diagnostics built into their devices. We also know that most shops and techs also use information systems like AllData, ProDemand and Identifix. These systems offer really good DTC to part/repair insight, wiring diagrams, maintenance plans, fluid capacities etc.

I am trying to learn the separation or overlap between the usage of scan devices and information systems.

1.Are both of these things almost always used concurrently during a diag & repair process? So for ex, the scan device is used for reading the code, and information system is used to figure out what part to replace/fix and how?

2.Is one tool considered more important than the other? Ex. every single tech needs the scan device, but the information system (like a ProDemand or Identifix) is a "nice to have"?

3.Is there a nuance like.. scan device is a must to have whenever there is a code/dash lamp on. Information systems are used only when you are dealing with a hard to diagnose issue OR a vehicle that is new to you, hence you need to access manufacturer repair info?

4.In what % of your repairs are you using scan devices only, information systems only, and both?

Your insights are much appreciated!!

Anuj Gupta
ZF Group
Vernon Hills, Illinois, USA

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